Totalitarianism and Work Modeling

I’ve been reading a lot about totalitarianism lately, and wanted to offer a brief, inchoate thought:

We want to model human work and behavior and encourage the invention of products that make accomplishing our tasks more efficient, or give us the ability to think of new tasks entirely.

We also don’t want to emulate Stalin, Mao, or Mussolini.

I think Steve Jobs’ vision and Google’s dominance are the reason I’m being drawn to think about totalitarianism. We are creating new people, or new, total ways of being people, and probably not for the better.

Selected Sources:

Bloc Heads,” a review (by Louis Menand) of Iron Curtain: The Crushing of Eastern Europe.

The Hungry Years,” a review of two books on China’s Great Famine (paywall).

Steve Jobs by Walter Isaacson.

Tim Cook’s Freshman Year: The Apple CEO Speaks,” in BloombergBusinessweek.

The tweets of Evgeny Morozov.

The Metaphysical Club by Louis Menand.